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A 15-Year-Old Was Allegedly Kidnapped By Her Teacher 2 Weeks Ago, & She Still Hasn't Been Found

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Today, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation announced that they have received 1,000 leads in the case of missing 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas, according to CNN. But none of them have led police to Thomas or her alleged kidnapper, former high school teacher Tad Cummins.

TBI Spokesman Josh DeVine told CNN in an email that there have been “no confirmed sightings” of Thomas and her abductor, despite “904 closed leads and 154 open.” Thomas has been missing since March 13.

Her disappearance follows accusations of inappropriate contact with Cummins on school property. Another student at Culleoka Unit High School reported seeing Cummins and Thomas kiss in the classroom earlier this month. The allegation led to Cummins’s suspension from teaching; the school officially fired Cummins when an Amber Alert for Thomas was released.  

While none of the leads given to investigators about Thomas’ location have been confirmed, more information about the nature of Cummins’ advances on the teen have been revealed. Beyond the alleged classroom incident, Cummins showed affection towards Thomas outside the boundaries of a normal student-teacher relationship. In an interview with PEOPLE, Brent Cooper, District Attorney for Maury County, Tenn., described “inappropriate” emails that Cummins and Thomas exchanged on a school email account by saving drafts addressed to each other. Based on the drafts, Cooper said that “they seemed to view [their relationship] as romantic.”

As police share further information on Cummins’ and Thomas’ inappropriate contact, the Thomas family wants the the investigation to remain focused on one thing: finding the missing teenager. This afternoon, they released a video of Elizabeth and her younger brother “in the hopes that someone recognizes her voice.” “Appearances can be altered,” a statement accompanying the video says, “but voices are indistinguishable.”

Investigators believe that Cummins and Thomas were last seen in Decatur, Ala. After that, the trail goes cold. We hope that further information can help investigators finally find Elizabeth—and bring her kidnapper to justice. 


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